Good Winter Boots Are Like Good Snow Tires – But Choose Wisely

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Want to avoid falling this winter – Choose your boots as carefully as you choose your snow tires

Maureen Dwight

Slipping on an icy surface sent over 21,000 people to hospital in Canada last year. If you want to reduce your risk for falling, in addition to considering the fit, the warmth and the aesthetic, take a close look at the tread when purchasing a new boot.

Determining what to buy recently became a lot easier thanks to a study published by Toronto Rehab Institute (TRI).  They  looked at 98 winter boots and watched people walk on progressively more risky surfaces.  In a safe environment they increased angles to simulate a ramp and put water over the ice to reduce the grip.  In the end only 9 winter boots received a passing grade.  If you would like to see the 9 boots that can significantly decrease your risk for falling on ice. they are listed at

Although many of us may try to not go out on icy days there are some things that just can’t be avoided. I took this list with me last weekend when we were looking for new boots to walk the dog.   Congratulations to the buyers at Mark’s Work Warehouse for having several of these better choices at their stores! The Tarantula treads look amazing as do several of the other advanced grip technologies.  

At the Orthopaedic Therapy Clinic our goal is to help our clients prevent injuries as well as recover from them.  We know that improving balance and strength are some of the factors that can make a difference.   

It’s not enough to focus just on preventing falls, it’s also important to make sure that if you do fall, that you fall “better”.  New research is looking into the role of upper body strength in absorbing the impact of the fall so that your bones don’t take the full force. The research on falls prevention and falling better are two of the catalysts driving osteoporosis research.  If you have concerns about falling please call us to set up an assessment and a program to help reduce your risk for falling.

Contact us at at 416-925-4687 or

This service pro­vides gen­eral infor­ma­tion and dis­cus­sion about therapy, health and related sub­jects. It is not meant to replace advice and/or treatment from your health care professional.